Lamb Kebab Recipe

Lamb Kebab Recipe Recipe

These lamb kebabs are called kofta kebabs. Unlike Greek lamb gyros, the patties are pan-fried instead of grilled. I mixed the lamb with garam masala, ginger garlic paste, chiles, ground almonds and bread, which gives the kebabs a denser texture. The finished dish is very refreshing, served with roasted vegetable couscous or pita bread and hummus.

As I think I've told you, lamb is probably one of my favorite meats, but I don't cook it very often because of the high cholesterol. If you're serving lamb for a party, I would advise you to season the meat well with lots of spices to cover the strong, distinct smell that some people might not like.


Yields: 14 patties

3 pounds boneless lamb shoulder
2-½ teaspoons cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons papaya paste (see tips)
1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste (click on the link for the recipe)
1 teaspoon garam masala (click on the link for the recipe)
6 tablespoons caramelized onions
¼ cup plain yogurt
6 tablespoons canola oil, as needed
½ teaspoon black pepper
1-¼ teaspoons salt
6 tablespoons ground almonds, roasted and ground into a fine paste
1 cup bread, crust removed and cubed
¼ cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
¼ cup cilantro, chopped


Prepping the lamb:

Trim the lamb of all visible fat, cut into 1-½" cubes and place the meat and bread in a meat grinder (I used a Kitchenaid meat grinder attachment but you could use a food processor if you don't have one).

In a bowl, combine the lamb, yogurt, papaya paste, ginger garlic paste, paprika, garam masala and red chili powder. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of oil. Marinate the meat for at least an hour.

Preparing the kebab mixture: Add almonds, caramelized onions, mint and cilantro to the lamb mixture. Season with salt and pepper.

Checking the seasoning: In a small pan, heat about 1 teaspoon of canola oil. Add about 1 to 2 tablespoons of the lamb mixture. Cook for about 2 minutes. Taste the meat. Adjust seasoning with more salt and pepper if necessary.

Assembly time:

Grease disposable gloves with oil (just as you would for Indian cutlets). Form 14 round thick patties and place them on a tray, lined with parchment paper. Chill them in the freezer for 30 minutes (this step will make the cooking of the patties much easier).

Remove the patties from the freezer. Brush the patties with a little oil and cook them right from the freezer.

Using a large flat non-stick griddle pan, heat 3 tablespoons of oil and pan-fry the kofta kebabs until there is a nicely browned crust; flip them and brown the other side as well, for a total of 3-4 minutes per side.

Serve immediately with sliced jalapeños, fresh mint and cilantro, fresh julienned ginger and lemon slices on the side.

Bon appétit!


Kofta kebabs resemble a thick hamburger patty or meat balls.

You can either make your own garam masala spice mix or buy it at any Indian store.

I use green papaya and yogurt as meat tenderizers to ensure juicy and moist meat. The papaya paste was Baji, Lulu's late grandma's secret for tender and moist meat. Peel a green papaya. Grind the cubed papaya with seeds in a mini food processor; place about 2 teaspoons of papaya paste per slot in an ice-cube tray and freeze them. Transfer the ice-cubes into sealable plastic bags and place back in the freezer. I think it's the best way to keep the flavor without getting freezer burn. I store them exactly the same as I would extra pesto.

Published By: Jacqueline Pham on September 9, 2010.


comments powered by Disqus

Order my latest book:
Banh Mi

Related Posts


Recent Posts

15 Fall Dessert Recipes for Dinner Parties
15 Fall Dessert Recipes for Dinner Parties
Soyrizo Mushroom Patties
Soyrizo Mushroom Patties
Mango Salsa Appetizers
Mango Salsa Appetizers
Turkey Noodle Stir Fry Recipe
Turkey Noodle Stir Fry Recipe